though certainly a Crime & Mystery offering, I wanted something a little less intense, and a little more witty, than the last two disturbio-fests I read. they were excellent...but I want to keep my sanity. anyway, this has a Nero Wolfe feel--Brass doubling for the Wolfe personality--with DeWitt as the legman, narrator, and wry commentator on whatever comes his way while he pokes at things that aren't quite kosher. this is a hit with me so far; 1930s New York feels great as a soother after much (well-enjoyed) horrific turmoil--of course I'm saying that before the first body drops...
oof! I just read two really freaky books in a row--wild plotting, sick nutty people, cruel twists of fate--and I guess that's what I get for doing Madball and then moving immediately to Cold Moon Over Babylon. eerie to eerier. now I don't know if my attempt to "dial it down a bit" in the form of Too Soon Dead is going to be the major backfire of the year...but I'm betting the book is at least not so freaky. I'm going for a lighter approach to Mystery as a sort of mind-cleanser--I mean, no matter who gets offed, and how, it's New York City in 1935...no swamps, no carnivals. honestly, how weird could it get?
I just jinxed it, didn't I. probably be the weirdest book I read all year...
I am a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes, so anything Holmes-related is going to attract my attention, and when I happened across the chance to get the entire Professor Moriarty series for a song, I grabbed them up, and this, the first in the series, didn't disappoint.
Of course it's odd reading a novel that makes Moriarty a hero of sorts, but for a good read, I'm willing to overlook the fact that this is the man who tried to kill Sherlock Holmes (knowing the outcome of that fateful meeting at Reichenbach Falls makes it easier for me to overcome my natural aversion to Moriarty). In The Infernal Device he comes across as intelligent and calculating, of course, but also as a gentleman with a certain kind of honor. I won't say I like him, but I find him slightly less than utterly despicable, and it's very interesting to see him and Holmes having to work together for a change.
The plot revolves around international intrigue, an unfortunate murder, and a dastardly plot to kill a prominent member of the British royal family. Of course there are close calls, plans gone awry, and a spectacularly suspenseful climax at the end.
I recommend this to Holmes fans and to readers looking for action, intrigue, and suspense. Long live Sherlock Holmes!